Did you know that Florida ranks as one of the highest states with uninsured drivers? According to a study conducted by the Insurance Research Council in 2012, Florida has an average of 3.2 million people statewide that do not carry auto insurance. This, in conjunction with the NHTSA’s statistic that, every day, 28 people die in drunk driving crashes nationwide, means the chances of you getting hit by a drunk driver without auto insurance is higher than you might think.
While these circumstances are out of your control, there are things you can do to protect yourself and help you pursue a claim against the other driver. Here are some tips:
Compile Information and Notes from the Scene of the Accident
Immediately after an accident, it is paramount you call the authorities and seek medical attention for any injuries sustained immediately. If you are able to, document everything you can about the accident. This can be the deciding factor in your case, and affect whether or not you receive the compensation you need and deserve following an accident.
Pictures of the damages
Notes about the conditions
Information on the other driver
Don’t rely on your memory alone; following impact, victims in any accident are often jostled and shaken-up, which can skew their ability to clearly recollect everything about the accident later on.
Especially with a drunk driving case, if you have any inkling they may be under the influence of alcohol or other substances, it is integral you note their behavior and inform the authorities once they arrive at the scene.
In a motorcycle accident? Click here to learn more about the steps to pursuing a motorcycle claim specifically.
You have every right to know what coverage the other driver has on his/her insurance policy. In fact, all insurance companies are obligated to provide a certified copy of insurance if such is requested. It is important to get concrete evidence that no policy exists, or is attached to the vehicle or the other driver, before proceeding with your case.
However, this may be difficult if information is not exchanged correctly, or you are waiting on a police report. By hiring an attorney, all the legwork will be done for you, in order to trace the driver to an insurance company or verify no policy exists in your stead.
Contact a DUI Accident Attorney
Addressing the fact that every case is different, you should choose an expert DUI accident attorney who will give the proper attention and expertise to both the personal injury and criminal aspect of your case.
After all, pursuing an opposing party without insurance carries a multitude of implications, and requires extensive know-how on related insurance laws. By pursuing a claim that lacks the proper evidence, you risk chasing a Trojan horse, and in turn decrease your chances for needed and just compensation.
If these conditions are met, however, and you sue the opposing driver, you may be able to receive a judgment. This enables the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles to suspend the other driver's license for up to 20 years, or until the judgment is satisfied in its entirety.
Remember, you don’t have to go into a courtroom unprepared, alone or without a cohesive and built case to present.
So, What Do I Do Next?
Take the first step and get a free consultation with a local attorney who is as invested in your case as you are. Read up on all the facts first, in order to educate yourself on your options in terms of pursuing a case against a drunk driver who doesn’t have insurance.